I’ve just learned the Renae De Liz, the mastermind behind the wonderful Womanthology project, is very ill and in the hospital. You can read the details here. As happens with many freelance artists she and her family do not have insurance.
I belong to a small local gallery that has a Facebook page where the internal artists talk about exhibits and such. Someone asked the question: list the things that make being an artist hard.
My reply: I hate it when people start expounding upon the meaning of a painting and then ask, ‘is that what you were going for?’ When really, I painted it because I thought it would be pretty.
However, I was thinking about this yesterday. Someone asked how much I make in conjunction with questions on a screenplay I’m writing (yes, apparently I have rude friends) and I hate this question for two reasons. First, I feel ashamed by how much I make—mainly because I have an unhealthy relationship with the idea of paying for the arts. Secondly the reply I commonly receive is, “So why are you a writer?”
It frustrates me to think people don’t respect the literary arts nearly as much as other art forms. I’m not saying that writing a screenplay is of the same caliber as a moving epic literary piece, but when something is crafted well the reward should equal the toil put into such a piece. It infuriates me when people devalue something I love doing because my ‘real’ job pays well. I think it is everyone’s wish to do what they love and in the meantime, they make ends meet in whatever way they can.
We all want to be free-range humans. We all have the desire to do what we love. Why, for the love of humanity, would you want to tell someone to stop trying because you make a decent living doing something you sort of dislike?